Tuesday, January 23, 2018

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Making A Difference, One Little Dress At A Time

– Posted in: Heroes
99 year old Lilian Weber has sewn hundreds of little dresses

Founded in 2008 by Rachel O’Neill, Little Dresses for Africa is a non-profit organization that supplies dresses primarily for little girls in Africa, but also serves the needs of other areas in crisis as well.

It all started when a few ladies who were visiting Africa on a mission trip saw the little girls in tattered dresses and decided to do something about it. After some discussion it was decided that a pillow case pattern would be used because they are a simple pattern that almost any novice seamstress can manage, they already have top, bottom, and side seams, and there are thousands of them sitting on shelves in closets all across the country.

They have been extremely successful, distributing over 2.5 million dresses since inception, and have many volunteers who find the work extremely rewarding. They offer many ways to help from just supplying sewing materials to the volunteer seamstresses, to helping with shipping, to actually visiting Africa to deliver the dresses (their favorite part).

My favorite part is that you can actually set up a sewing group, or have a sewing party, which I think is a great idea for anyone who just wants a fun project to enjoy with neighbors, friends, and other volunteers. It is also an opportunity for the older generation to teach the younger generation a valuable skill, and for the community to come together. If I had children and a group like this around town – we would go. Perhaps some nursing homes can form these kinds of groups, the potential for this just seems exciting.

If you have been looking for something to do, some way to make a difference, or some way to connect with people and community, if you know how to sew, or would like to learn, or just want to help out, check out Little Dresses For Africa, I bet you could find a whole new rewarding world in it.

Certainly these groups will continue to spring up all over the place. And certainly there will be other similar groups following their example and doing similar type projects to make the world a better place.

The organization seems to be really thriving. They are now even doing pants for little boys, and who knows what else the future holds for this innovative, empowering organization. We will be certain to bring you any RealGoodNews Little Dresses For Africa has in the future.

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